The release of former Argentine Vicepresident Amado Boudou was ordered Tuesday by a three-member court on condition that he posts bail in the amount of one million pesos (around US$ 26,500) and wears a GPS tracking device around his ankle.
Boudou was serving a sentence of five years and 10 months in prison at the Ezeiza penitentiary for his involvement in the fraudulent purchase of the Ciccone mint when he was economy minister under President Néstor Kirchner plus bribery and unproper deeds for a government official.
Justices Gabriela López Iñíguez and Adriana Pallioti rendered a ruling by 2 votes to 1 which also forbids Boudou from leaving the country.
In making their decisions, the judges considered that Boudou poses no flight risk and is also unable to hinder the investigation or to escape.
It would not be unreasonable to mention that [Mr. Boudou] belongs to a political sector opposed to the one in power, which should logically weaken the likelihood of success an attempt to leave the country illegally might have, the judges said.
Tuesday's decision was an answer to a request from Boudou's legal defense team before Federal Court 4 last Friday, following Federal Judge Ariel Lijo's ordering new indictments but with no preemptive arrest.
When prosecuting former Tax Bureau (AFIP) head Ricardo Echegaray and former National Mint (Casa de la Moneda) owner Katya Daura, Lijo allowed them to stay out of jail because he saw no possibility of either of them hindering the investigation, the most relevant evidence gathering measures having been already carried out.
Under these circumstances, Boudou's attorneys Alejandro Rua and Graciana Peñafort maintained the same interpretation applied to their client.
On August 7, Boudou had been found criminally responsible for the crimes of passive bribery and negotiations incompatible with the public function and sentenced him to prison, plus a fine of 90 thousand pesos and a lifelong ban from public offices.
Boudou's inprisonment became effective immediately and he was taken to the Ezeiza penitentiary where his friend and partner José María Núñez Carmona and Nicolás Ciccone, a former owner of the company, were also serving similar prison sentences related to this case.